Ontario Association of Medical Laboratories partners for greater quality for patients

TORONTO, April 27, 2016 /CNW/ - April 24th - April 30th is National Medical Laboratory Week – a week that promotes awareness and understanding of the role of medical laboratory professionals in Canada's healthcare system.  The Ontario Association of Medical Laboratories (OAML) is proud to highlight an innovative quality assurance initiative undertaken by the medical laboratory professionals of Ontario's community laboratories.

Working in conjunction with the OAML, Ontario's community laboratories have partnered with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) and the Institute for Quality Management in Healthcare (IQHM), to develop a program that integrates the province's 338 licensed specimen collection centres (SCCs) into Ontario's ISO 15189 accreditation program for licensed medical laboratories.

Integrating with the laboratory accreditation program provides the essential framework for community laboratory collection centres to stimulate continuous improvement and to improve the patient experience. This ISO 15189 accreditation certificate is a globally recognized symbol of world class quality that will now be used to ensure community laboratory SCCs are held to this exemplary standard.

Over fifty-five thousand Ontarians a day visit these SCCs when they require testing to maintain their health, detect disease in the early stages, and monitor their treatment e.g. cholesterol testing or cancer screening. At these centres specimens are collected, processed, and packaged for transportation to the community labs' highly automated testing facilities located across the province.

IQMH, an internationally recognized provider of accreditation services, will be determining whether the community labs' SCCs meet the requirements necessary for accreditation at this level. "Successful accreditation will demonstrate that the community laboratory SCCs have undertaken a rigorous process of quality assurance with quality patient outcomes as its focus," said Paul Gould, CEO of the OAML.

This new program is expected to be introduced across the province as of July 1, 2016.

The OAML was established in 1978 as the voice of Ontario's community medical laboratory sector.  OAML member laboratories provide 95% of all diagnostic testing for patients outside of hospitals. The Association is composed of 6 members that operate 17 accredited testing facilities and 338 licensed specimen collection centres across Ontario.

SOURCE Ontario Association of Medical Laboratories

Image with caption: "Ontario Association of Medical Laboratories (CNW Group/Ontario Association of Medical Laboratories)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160427_C6414_PHOTO_EN_673087.jpg

For further information: Chief Executive Officer: Paul J. Gould, 416-250-8555, pgould@oaml.com, www.oaml.com

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